Palo Alto High grad Joc Pederson of the Albuquerque Isotopes has been named the 2014 Pacific Coast League Rookie of the Year, the league announced today.
Pederson, a center fielder, was voted the league's top rookie after a balloting of the PCL field managers and media representatives from across the league. The award was created in 1998 and honors a player's outstanding achievement during his first year at the Triple-A level.
The award for Pederson comes after having one of the most historic seasons in PCL history. The Los Angeles Dodgers' No. 1 prospect has belted 33 home runs and stolen 30 bases in 117 games this year, resulting in the fourth 30/30 season in the league's 112-year history. He is the first to join the PCL's 30/30 club since Frank Demaree (45/41) accomplished the feat in 1934, while playing 186 games for the Los Angeles Angels.
Pederson's home-run total leads the league through Tuesday game, during which he went 3-for-4 with two RBI plus a home run. His 30 stolen bases are tied for the sixth-most. He also owns PCL highs in total bases (254), walks (96), on-base percentage (.435), and OPS (1.026).
The Dodgers selected Pederson in the 11th round of the 2010 First-Year Player Draft. Over five Minor League seasons, Pederson boasts a .302 average, 85 home runs and 113 stolen bases. This year he was selected to the PCL's starting outfield for the Triple-A All-Star game in July, where he homered in his third at-bat of the game. On Monday, he was again honored by the league as an outfielder on the All-PCL Team.
The 22-year-old becomes the first Albuquerque Isotope to ever be named the Rookie of the Year, as well as the first player in Dodgers' Triple-A affiliate history. He is the eighth outfielder to earn the honor from the PCL and the first since Reno's Adam Eaton took the accolade in 2012.
The Dodgers are expected to call up Pederson when the Minor League season ends and rosters expand next week in what would be his Major League debut.